Why Weatherize?

Home heating is a high-cost basic necessity. Americans spent $231 billion in 2010 on residential energy according to a 2010 Oak Ridge National Laboratory study. Low income households spend nearly 14 percent of their total annual income on energy costs. Other households spend only 3 percent of their annual income, on average, on energy costs. Low income families often cut back on other necessities to pay their energy bills. For people with low incomes, the decision to pay the utility bill may mean deciding between being warm in the winter and eating complete meals or having prescription medication. Other low income people live in older homes that may not have insulation or may have older, less efficient appliances. LIWAP is a long-lasting solution to these problems.

Households that have received weatherization services are better able to pay utility bills and reduce debt. A home that has been weatherized can reduce average annual fuel usage per dwelling by 35 percent for the typical low income home. Weatherization allows for a reduced burden on utility assistance providers, and the energy savings achieved through weatherization allow for the program to be cost effective.1

For every $1 invested in the program, Weatherization returns $2.51 to the household and society.1

  • $1.80 is returned in reduced energy bill
  • $0.71 is returned to ratepayers, households, and communities through:
    • Increased local employment
    • Reduced uncollectible utility bills
    • Better health and safety
      • Reduces heat-related illness and death
      • Reduces risk of death from home fires due to utility disconnection